What I Use

Last Updated: August 2018

Gemini PDA

I was always a fan of PDAs (Personal Digital Assistants) and used to own various Psion PDAs including various models of the Organizer II and Series 3, and the Series 5.  The Gemini has been created by UK startup Planet Computers, and the man behind the Psion Series 5’s legendary keyboard.

It runs Android and Linux in a dual-boot system with an 18:9 (2160 x 1080) display, a 10 core CPU, 4GB Ram, and comes with 64GB storage that I have expanded with a 256GB MicroSD card.  It has both Wi-Fi and 4G connectivity.  In addition to being a fully-functional PDA, the Gemini is also my phone.

I own three Gemini PDAs and quite literally wrote the book on them, as I’m the author of the official user guide.

Self-Build Desktop PC

My self-build PC is now getting a bit long-in the tooth and showing its age, but it’s based around an Intel Ivy-Bridge i7 4930K processor running at 3.4GHz, 32GB Ram, an Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 graphics card various drives with the OS residing on a 500GB Samsung 840 EVO SSD.

LG 34UC88 Ultrawide Curved Monitor

I bought this 34-inch, 21:9 ultrawide, curved monitor both for gaming (I play Elite: Dangerous a lot) but also for work (spreadsheets look amazing).  It has a resolution of 3440 x 1440 and provides an excellent wrap-around workspace.

Bose Companion 50 Speakers

I take my music as seriously as my gaming, and buy 24-bit audio online.  My speakers therefore had to be great, so I chose the Bose Companion 50 PC speaker 2.1 set.

Dell XPS 13

The Dell XPS 13 is the best laptop on the planet… end of.  My own XPS 13 (which I’ll probably replace this year with the latest model) features a dual core i7 processor, 8GB ram and a 512GB SSD, with that amazing “infinity display” screen.  While I still have the XPS 13, it’s not been used in anger since I bought the Gemini PDA.

Intel NUC Abel M2

Tucked away, strapped to the back of my living room TV, and running Windows 7 Media Centre is an Intel NUC that I use just for watching TV and video.  It has a Core i5 processor with 8GB Ram and a 250GB M.2 SSD.

Xbox One X

Okay I’ll admit it, I won this in a Microsoft giveaway.  I’m not complaining though.  It might not get used much for games, though we’ve enjoyed Elite: Dangerous, Cuphead, and Star Wars Battlefront on it.  I use it mostly to watch 4K Blu-Ray movies, and it’s an excellent player.

HP Slate 17

The HP Slate 17 is a 17-inch android tablet, complete with kickstand, that just sits next to my desk to serve as a screen for TV and videos.  It’s getting a bit old now, but still works perfectly well for what I use it for.

HP Stream 7

Again this HP Stream 7 is getting a bit old, and it’s only used as a test-machine when I need to write about Windows 10 running on screens smaller than 10-inches.

Hyper-X Cloud II Headset

The Hyper-X Cloud II headset is a really fantastic set of headphones, featuring simulated 7.1 surround sound, and useful features such as both a 3.5mm connector, and a USB connector.  Perhaps most useful for me, for the occasional conference call, is that the microphone is detachable.  Why did I choose this headset though?  To be honest I won it in a competition, tried it, and loved it.

Olympus LS14 and LS100 Audio Recorders

When I’m recording video courseware I need top of the line recording equipment, and for this I turn to my Olympus LS14 and LS100 professional recorders.

EditorsKeys SL600 Microphone

Additionally to the Olympus recorders, I have an EditorsKeys SL600 condenser USB microsphone, which is also top of the line.

JVC GC-PX100

I’ve had the JVC GC-PX100 video camera almost since the first day it was released.  It’s a bit older now and can’t record 4K video, but it’s an excellent camera for any video work, outdoors or in the studio.  I will likely sell this camera later this year or early next year though, as I’m keenly eyeing up the new Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K.

 

Harmon Kardon Invoke

While it lacks the skills of Alexa or Google Home, my smart speaker of choice is definitely the Harmon Kardon Invoke with Cortana, and I own three of them.  The integration with Microsoft services swung it for me, and being able to set reminders that will alert me on whatever device I’m using at the time, and add items to my Cortana To-Do list are features I personally find invaluable.

 

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